Nicholas B. Pryor’s Letter to President Thomas Jefferson


OK, I admit sometimes I drool over Thomas Jefferson like he was a rock star. But isn’t it fun when you can tie family research with one of the Founding Fathers? The National Archives has been putting Founding Fathers documents online. Hazzah! Double Hazzah!… the website is cross referenced so when you find one thing you easily find more. Oh yea, this is a history junkie’s dream!

On August 7, 1812 Nicholas B. Pryor of Nashville (one of our Sumner County and Overton County, TN cousins! He’s my 1st cousin x6) wrote to Jefferson asking for help with a military appointment The letter made it’s way from Nashville to Jefferson’s desk at Monticello (he was retired by 1809). Perhaps because Nicholas’ sister Mitchie Pryor was married to Jefferson’s brother, the letter didn’t sit at the bottom of a slush pile– On August 24 Jefferson wrote to William Eustis, the Secretary of War, recommending Pryor and he also responded to Pryor. I wonder if Jefferson used that wild letter copying device they have at Monticello!

Jefferson mentioned in the letter that he knew Pryor from a neighboring county. Hmmm, he failed to mention their relationship by marriage–they were brother-in-laws. Now that’s an interesting little insight into Thomas Jefferson. Guess he had been involved in the political system long enough to  know how to move along a political appointment. http://virginia-pryors/the-pryors-and-their-jeffersonian-connections/